Sophomore psychology major Iliana Esparza is a city girl from Albuquerque, New Mexico. To many around campus, she is known as Nana, or the nicest girl on Earth. She had no idea that Carlinville existed when she was looking at colleges, let alone Blackburn, but now she is here on the Picture of Hope scholarship.
Here at little old Blackburn, Esparza participates in the dance club, student senate, and is applying for a general manager position. She dances because it reminds her of when she was a little girl at quinceaneras and weddings. She started dancing at the young age of seven years old at Kishet Dance Company in Albuquerque starting with jazz, ballet and hip hop.
Esparza said she juggles class, work, dance and student senate, “and church on top of that, but I still do it. I schedule study sessions between classes, when I’m done with my day at 10, and open time in the weekends.” Esparza’s favorite part of dancing is the music. She absolutely loves music and listens to it everywhere she goes. Another reason Iliana loves dance is because she can spend time with people she likes to hang out with and just have fun while doing it.
Esparza was worried about biting off more than she can chew in her first semester because she didn’t want to be too busy to be social. Esparza’s fear faded, however, as time went on, she realized that she was social everywhere she went. Esparza is excited and ready to venture further into her Blackburn journey.